[Bf-committers] Transform Refactoring

Matt Ebb matt at mke3.net
Wed Sep 15 04:36:49 CEST 2004

On 15 Sep 2004, at 5:39 AM, Ton Roosendaal wrote:

> - What I really miss is the target & result of this work... what is 
> the aim?

Maybe this is a good time to mention a few requests (as a user) for 
transforms that this refactoring may help to make easier. I don't 
understand that well how to allow for these things, but perhaps while 
you're designing a more generalised system to allow a) more 
functionality and b) easier developer access to that functionality, 
then maybe these ideas may be nice to keep in mind, or might provide 

One thing I'd like to see is more of the 'special' transforms like 
Warp, Shear, Shrink/Fatten. Having other options (that we already have 
access to via commands) like Smooth, Noise, To Sphere, or even new 
things like 'Twist' or 'Taper' as interactive transforms would be 
excellent and make life much easier. The 'To Sphere' command borders on 
useless right now, since trying to estimate how much 'percentage' to 
use before you execute the command is almost impossible, but if you 
could just interactively move through the range of 1% to 100% with the 
mouse, in a transformation, it'd be so much clearer and easier. Perhaps 
a generic system that lets coders easily 'plug in' new types of 
transforms like this would help.

Another thing that would be great is if the transforming itself was 
made separate to the input events, allowing you to use more than just 
the mouse position as the input to transforms. For example, a way to 
'paint' transformations as in Zbrush would be just awesome (do a loop 
while the mouse button is pressed, as in brush select, but instead of 
selecting the verts, perform a small transformation over and over 
again). If this was a general input to transform functionality then you 
might get all the different tools very easily, for example if the last 
request of having things like 'Smooth' encapsulated in the transform 
code happened, so you could just go and 'rub over' the bumps in a model 
to smooth it out.

Another interesting idea (maybe similar to what Ton's talking about 
with 'flow split') is a feature of Modo's called 'sketch extrude'. 
Basically you move the mouse in the viewport, and the extrusion follows 
the path of the mouse. It seems like a relatively simple, but very 
useful idea, code-wise - do an extrude, then when the distance from the 
mouse pointer to the original location reaches a certain threshold, 
automatically confirm that extrusion and start a new one from that 
point. Maybe there are more nifty ideas to be thought up that involve 
integrating transforms with other functionality (like extrude) to come 
up with some new interactive features.

Anyway, some food for thought, I guess...

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